The (Insert Any Camera Here) Debate

I was going to use the Canon 5D MK III to illustrate this point because it’s the newest and everyone is talking about it. However, this happens every time a new camera is released so instead I’m going to use (insert any camera here). This is not something that will go away. A new camera comes out and we go through the same motions. Now you will have a handy reference guide for whenever they are released 😉 Allow me to walk through the steps.

1) The (insert any camera here) rumor mill.
An unconfirmed report comes out stating the camera will have (insert any spec here) and (insert any spec here). This causes a number of reactions. One faction becomes excited because they have been waiting forever for (insert any spec here). Another group calls shenanigans and says there is no way (insert any camera here) will have (insert any spec here). It’s not going to happen and who told you that anyway?

2) The (insert any camera here) release date announced.
Now we have a date when the (insert any camera here) is supposed to be released. Repeat step one but this time with more (insert any spec here). More noise from both sides. We still haven’t accomplished much.

3) The (insert any camera here) is announced.
Now the fun begins. We now have to take everyone and divide them even more. Let’s break them down into sub-categories, shall we.

The Affiliated
The Unrealistic
The Feather Puffer
The Pixel Peeper
The Envious
The Defensive
The Know-it-All
The Indifferent
The Worker

The Affiliated is all about back-links, SEO and affiliate money. They will use (insert any camera here) strictly as a force to drive traffic to their blog. They most likely don’t actually use (insert any camera here) and are just trying to cash-in on the (insert any camera here) craze. There is nothing wrong with affiliate links or blogs. You are currently reading one that I just finished writing. Just remember to consider the source and take everything with a grain of salt.

The Unrealistic was never going to be happy with (insert any camera here). They will tell you they are shocked it didn’t have (insert any unrealistic spec here). They also can’t believe it isn’t being sold for (insert any unrealistically low price here). This person typically never picked up a camera before a DSLR which has given them Alexa taste on a T2i budget.

The Pixel Peeper is only concerned with the (insert any spec here). No matter what (insert any camera here) can do. They are just here to remind us all of the various (insert any specs here) that the camera is lacking. Think “rain on the parade” or “wet blanket” but way nerdier and more annoying.

The Feather Puffer is here to do just that. Whatever stance the Feather Puffer takes on (insert any camera here) it has nothing to do with the camera or (insert any spec here). This is about them. They are throwing their two cents in as a way to say, “Hey, screw the (insert any camera here) look at ME!!!”

The Envious has no means of ever purchasing the (insert any camera here). You can expect negativity based on little to no fact and/or manipulating the facts and using the (insert any spec here) or lack of a (insert any spec here) to further their agenda. That agenda is: I can’t afford a (insert any camera here) so, therefore, it sucks. This illogical way of thinking is gaining traction.

The Defender just bought a different (insert any camera here). Now, they need to justify that purchase. No matter what the new (insert any camera here) is capable of they will trash it. Not everyone who bought a different (insert any camera here) falls into this category.

The Know-It-All will jump back and forth over the fence so many times you will get dizzy trying to keep up. One week the (insert any camera here) may suck. The next it may be the greatest because of (insert any spec here), (insert any spec here), (insert any spec here), (insert any spec here), and (insert any spec here). You can expect a lot of numbers and mumbo-jumbo. No matter what you say. It’s wrong. The Know-It-All is usually intelligent, to a degree. The problem is they are aware of this and love nothing more then the sound of their own voice.

The Indifferent is going to play this with….well, indifference. They will be neutral. It’s not about the (insert any camera here). It’s about the story. Expect, something along the lines of (insert any spec here) doesn’t make films. I do. By far, the least annoying of the group. The only danger is if the indifference to (insert any camera here) starts to find it’s way into other areas of life.

The Worker was too busy working to throw their two cents in. While (insert any camera here) has occupied every corner of the social media spectrum, the worker was on set, in the editing cave, on the phone, or in a meeting. The worker was too busy actually out there doing it, making it happen. The worker will do their research, form an opinion based on whether or not the (insert any camera here) will get them booked more or make the quality of their work better.

The point here: Don’t be an affiliated, unrealistic, pixel-pepping, feather puffing, envious, defensive or indifferent know-it all.

Be a worker. Go out and do it. Make shit happen.

Now, I have to step down off of my soap box and get back to work. There are films to be edited, scenes to light, scripts to write, and things to shoot. I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t go out and do it. If I didn’t make shit happen.

I failed to mention one group. They are only spoken about in murmurs around campfires and whispered about in passing. Their very existence can neither be confirmed nor denied. These are people who just have a genuine interest in the craft and are curious about (insert any camera here). They are up for a balanced, informed discussion void of judgment and irrational knee-jerk cynicism. They are not fueled by ulterior motives. They have no agenda. They merely enjoy where we are at technologically and are inspired about where we could be headed. I almost feel foolish talking about them as if they exist. They are the modern day leprechaun. They should be approached with caution as none have ever been seen before, and as such, no one knows exactly what they are capable of. If you see one just turn around,walk away calmly and never tell anyone. They wouldn’t believe you anyway.

Leave your two-cents in the comment box because indifference is death while you’re still alive.


As I get feed back I will be adding sub-categories I may have missed.

The Dreamer is similar to the Unrealistic in expectation but not outlook. The major difference is the Dreamer knew their lofty hopes and aspirations would probably never be met. However, it is in the Dreamer’s nature to be positive. You can expect to hear such cliches as “I can dream can’t I?” and “Maybe they’ll release a firmware update.”


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23 replies
  1. Ron
    Ron says:

    It’s important to realize that the other groups represent the community as a whole where everyone has a voice,
    can opt to share their voice, and feel a part of this camera community. This ultimately may even lead to work
    for some, a sense of belonging for some, or may just be wasted time for others.

    Opinions are like $#?holes – everyone has one. Some opinions hit home with us, some don’t. Some come from a place of
    analytic perspective, some from experience, some from hope, wish-fulness or expectation, and others from shear ignorance.
    But we have the choice of whether we want to listen, participate, ignore, educate, tolerate, or infuriate.

    Any review we read, whether it be personal or professional, is always the opinion of that one person. Sometimes it is based on facts and figures, other times it may be based on in-the-field experience, and other times it may be someone trying to cash in on the craze. I will admit that over the years I have learned a lot from the pixel peepers (perfectionists), know-it-alls (there’s always something to learn in there), the feather puffers, the envious (don’t be), the defenders, the affiliated, the unrealistic, and the workers. I would like to think that I have learned more from the workers, but there are nuggets to be learned from everyone, everywhere.

    • Jon Connor
      Jon Connor says:

      Agreed. Certainly not meant as an attack on any of the categories, as I have been in most of them at some point in time or another. Trying to add a little levity to a gear obsessed nerd culture I partake in 😉

      • Ron
        Ron says:

        Jon. I have been in quite a few of these categories as well (dreamer, pixel peeper, envious, the defender, and worker), and still sometimes feel a part of the envious category (C300, Red, Alexa, heli rigs, auto light-senssing-bulb-ramping MOCO time-lapse rig), I just don’t let it hold me back from shooting and creating. The the envy that I think allows me to continue dreaming.

  2. Gert
    Gert says:

    I will print this on paper an put on a wall like a beautiful painting. Jon, this is right on the spot! BOOM!

    P.S. I’m not licking power connectors off the MacBook powersupply and I don’t earn a cent off Camcorderinfo.NL

    P.S. In which catagory we pirates fit? I do hope you say ‘workers’.

  3. Zak Forsman
    Zak Forsman says:

    you forgot to add that we workers, DO manage to find time to take our jabs at everyone else by posting a reminder that we’re above it all. 🙂

    which reminds me, while everyone was arguing over the AF-100’s highlights and noisy blacks, I shot a feature-length motion picture with it.

  4. Liam Hall
    Liam Hall says:

    Great article.

    I’d add the “Pretender” – deluded individual with no professional track record who claims to be a “cinematographer” simply because they have a netflix account.

    Now that I’ve written that I guess you can file me under “sanctimonious git” 🙂

  5. Ken Hull
    Ken Hull says:

    Reminds me of the book “Games People Play” by psychiatrist Eric Berne. One of the “games” he describes is called “Detroit”, where men get together and argue which brand of automobile is best.

  6. Sabyasachi Patra
    Sabyasachi Patra says:

    Nicely written. Some people have a deep sense of insecurity or inferiority complex that they want to project an image as a Mr. Know all. Everytime there is a camera there are a range of emotions in people. Over a period of time, I am able to differentiate and put people in various buckets and take the suggestions seriously of only a few.

  7. Joe simon
    Joe simon says:

    This post is amazing, it’s so true and I can see it getting a few panties in a wad! It’s all about what you do, not the gear you own or wish you had. Get out there and make something!


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